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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi! I just brought my beautiful girl home on Saturday! I love her to death but she’s been... difficult to train. She won’t try food that isn’t in a bowl, to the point that I had to shove a little glob of peanut butter in her mouth yesterday. She also cries when put in the crate unless she is put in there while very sleepy. Is this normal puppy behavior, or do you think she’s just stressed still? Any help is greatly appreciated, I just want to give her a treat when she does something good!
 

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This is normal :) there are a lot of good resources on crate training. For most dogs, it is actual training. If you put a puppy in a crate and expect it to be quiet, you will be in for a rude awakening.

I don’t understand the food issue, she will only eat food in her bowl? Have you tried cheese or something else? Maybe she doesn’t like the dog treats
 

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Yes and yes, my girl screamed and howled the first night. I moved her crate next to me while I slept. I would use my voice and fingers to comfort her. I took her out every couple of hours the first few nights. She's settled but it took 5 or 6 nights. She didn't find her appetite until the second week she was here. I found tiny pieces of roast chicken helped motivate her. Be patient, and consistent, she'll come around.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I don’t understand the food issue, she will only eat food in her bowl? Have you tried cheese or something else? Maybe she doesn’t like the dog treats
The plan was to use some of her food as training treats before meals but she will just stare at you like you have grown a second head when trying to lure her or reward her. We have tried cheese, a small piece of chicken, and some treats that her breeder recommended, but she doesn’t seem to grasp the fact that it’s for her.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yes and yes, my girl screamed and howled the first night. I moved her crate next to me while I slept. I would use my voice and fingers to comfort her. I took her out every couple of hours the first few nights. She's settled but it took 5 or 6 nights. She didn't find her appetite until the second week she was here. I found tiny pieces of roast chicken helped motivate her. Be patient, and consistent, she'll come around.
Okay, I was worried that she was taking too long to settle in, thank you!
 

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Keep in mind she's just a tiny baby taken away from everything familiar and it is quite shocking for some puppies. There is a puppy scream they are born with that helps a lost puppy be found. It is a very distressing cry. You need to let her know you are there but don't take her out of the crate when she's actually crying because that teaches her that crying will get me out. Wait until there is a moment of silence and then let her out. I agree the not eating food outside the bowl will probably stop as she gets adjusted. Keep offering different options with your hand and leave a bit in her crate. One thing that helped me was to remember how few days she's been alive. 8 weeks is only 56 days.
 
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The plan was to use some of her food as training treats before meals but she will just stare at you like you have grown a second head when trying to lure her or reward her. We have tried cheese, a small piece of chicken, and some treats that her breeder recommended, but she doesn’t seem to grasp the fact that it’s for her.
Ah now I understand. That’s interesting. She might be too young to really have much of a food drive. I wouldn’t expect this to be a long term issue. Do you free feed her?
 

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, I just want to give her a treat when she does something good!
Treats are wonderful, and she will come to love them! But until then, don't force them. And if she doesn't accept an edible treat, be sure to give her lots of happy verbal praise or touch to let her know she's done something right.
She is so new in your home, and even though you may have waited a long time to get her and been well prepared for her, she has no idea why everything in her life changed just two days ago!
You've come to the right forum to get lots of answers in these first few crazy months of welcoming a golden retriever puppy! And photos are always appreciated here!
 

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That's really not that much food, so I'm rather surprised she's turning her nose up :( Maybe she'll be more open to eating as she matures. My more athletic dogs tend to turn their nose up at food constantly as puppies but usually aren't so bad as adults.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
That's really not that much food, so I'm rather surprised she's turning her nose up :( Maybe she'll be more open to eating as she matures. My more athletic dogs tend to turn their nose up at food constantly as puppies but usually aren't so bad as adults.
It’s really not, she’s been ravenous and will eat a little bit more than 3 cups if she feels like it, but so far that was just Sunday. May end up switching her food to see if that motivates her to eat a little bit more since she’s a bit on the thin side for a puppy?
 

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Sage is very sweet! She’s adjusting. If you switch her food, do it gradually. I’d give her a little more time unless the vet advises otherwise regarding her food due to her being underweight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Sage is very sweet! She’s adjusting. If you switch her food, do it gradually. I’d give her a little more time unless the vet advises otherwise regarding her food due to her being underweight.
Her vet put her on some sensitive stomach wet food for a week, as she had been having diarrhea (not parvo, just a parasite, thankfully), she’s gaining weight now, which is great, but she’s still a bit odd about eating her kibble, we’re going to try it in a kong toy tomorrow to see if working for it makes it any more enjoyable!
 
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